ATNS survey shows high ratings but…


Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS) used the International Day of the Air Traffic Controller to announce the generally good results of its annual customer survey.

Restricted to pilots and the top 20 airlines, the survey returned high ratings on, among others, helpfulness, friendliness of staff, good communications skills, good radar vectoring, efficacy in air traffic controlling, professionalism and the provision of quick and efficient service.

On the debit side of the ledger those who took part in the survey cited the language barrier as well as the high cost of billing and access to ATNS’ services.

The survey results were made public on Sunday in Somerset West at the end of the 43rd Airlines Association of South Africa (AASA) general assembly.

Airlines which took part in the computer assisted personal interview and web-based/online survey included SAA, Emirates, Etihad, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, British Airways and KLM.
“Marginal customer satisfaction was found to be positive. It means there is marginal satisfaction by clients over the minimum accepted service level. Satisfaction and expectation levels were based on minimum accepted level of service, actual service and ideal level of service,” Percy Morokane, ATNS external corporate communications manager, said.

As part of the survey pilots were given the opportunity to compare ATNS air traffic controllers to other regional air navigation service providers. “Over 70% rated ATNS high in terms of service,” he said.

Explaining the thinking behind the survey Morokane said: “It is often assumed sole providers of service, such as ATNS, are inefficient because there is no competition. Many believe ATNS falls into this category and the survey is one method of ensuring quality services are delivered to create a satisfied clientele.
“ATNS’ vision is to be customer driven and strive to provide efficient services that meet customer expectations. A strategic objective for conducting research of this nature is to establish trends and offer a base for longitudinal comparisons. This study was motivated by ATNS’ commitment to service excellence.”

The government-owned company is responsible for air traffic control in South Africa, representing about 10% of the world’s airspace.